Selfie importance

by Toby Manhire / 18 February, 2013
The photographed self-portrait has surged in popularity. Here are some of the most remarkable selfies - and the best.


 

A selfie? Straight to the Urban Dictionary:

A picture taken of yourself that is planned to be uploaded to Facebook, Myspace or any other sort of social networking website. You can usually see the person's arm holding out the camera in which case you can clearly tell that this person does not have any friends to take pictures of them so they resort to Myspace to find internet friends and post pictures of themselves, taken by themselves. A selfie is usually accompanied by a kissy face or the individual looking in a direction that is not towards the camera.


Time magazine named “selfie” one of the top 10 buzzwords of 2012. It explains, more soberly:

People have been taking photos of themselves and sharing them with friends, family and Internet strangers for years. Yet it wasn’t until 2012 that a name for these self-portraits, typically made to post on a social networking website (or send in a text message), really hit the big time. Selfies are often snapped at odd angles with smartphones and include some part of the photographer’s arm ...


A so-called “hipster selfie,” one that strays from mainstream practices, may not even feature the person’s face at all—perhaps because it’s eclipsed by the old-fashioned camera he or she used to take the portrait in a mirror.


 One of the senior experts in the genre is pop singer Rihanna.



The advice from the prolific selfier (selfiest?), as shared with Complex magazine:

Get a good angle on what’s working for you that day. If it’s boobs, make sure you hit that. If it’s face, make sure it’s fierce.


Sage words. If only photographer Robert Cornelius had thought of that when he took his own photo in 1839, in what, according to BuzzFeed, is the earliest surviving selfie:



Very instagram, don’t you think?

And you know something has gone mainstream when it enters the sphere of politicians. Hillary Clinton and Meryl Streep were snapped taking a selfie late last year, but there is sadly no evidence that they shared the thing.

Sasha and Malia Obama were also seen selfie-posing at their dad’s inauguration the other week. They even spurred the venerable New York Times to use the word selfie.



But again, no sign of the selfie itself – and they’re not of course politicians in any case.

All of which means that Judith Collins could be the first – the senior minister and future National leader (maybe) has reinforced New Zealand’s reputation as a political pioneer by tweeting – that’s right, tweeting – this selfie, with prime minister John Key, at the start of the month:



 

I’d quibble about the grammar, but I’m too busy gulping.

But probably the best selfie ever (via @BuzzFeedAndrew) is this, taken by Japanese astronaut Aki Hoshide from the International Space Station.



 

Even better than Rihanna, isn’t it?

From the NASA site where it first appeared in September last year:

Space station astronaut Aki Hoshide (Japan) recorded this striking image while helping to augment the capabilities of the Earth-orbiting International Space Station (ISS). Visible in this outworldly assemblage is the Sun, the Earth, two portions of a robotic arm, an astronaut's spacesuit, the deep darkness of space, and the unusual camera taking the picture. This image joins other historic -- and possibly artistic -- self-portraits taken previously in space.

MostReadArticlesCollectionWidget - Most Read - Used in articles
AdvertModule - Advert - M-Rec / Halfpage

Latest

A post-mortem on Todd Barclay and Matt McCarten's fiascos
76497 2017-07-24 00:00:00Z Politics

A post-mortem on Todd Barclay and Matt McCarten's …

by Jane Clifton

In the catalogue of disaster, is a Todd Barclay worse than a Matt McCarten?

Read more
The Trump family's Kremlin connection
76655 2017-07-24 00:00:00Z World

The Trump family's Kremlin connection

by Paul Thomas

From “nothing to see here” to a Cold War-era spy story played out in real life, the Trump family’s Kremlin connection is a source of fascination.

Read more
The Journey – movie review
76661 2017-07-24 00:00:00Z Movies

The Journey – movie review

by James Robins

A van isn’t a great vehicle for a drama on how old enemies ended the Troubles.

Read more
Gaylene Preston on the difficulties of filming at the United Nations
76664 2017-07-24 00:00:00Z Movies

Gaylene Preston on the difficulties of filming at …

by David Larsen

Tracking Helen Clark’s tilt for the top job at the United Nations, Gaylene Preston documented the creatures of the diplomatic world.

Read more
Jackie van Beek puts the gags aside for The Inland Road
76815 2017-07-24 00:00:00Z Movies

Jackie van Beek puts the gags aside for The Inland…

by Russell Baillie

Best known for her comedy roles, Jackie van Beek takes a dramatic detour in her feature-directing debut.

Read more
Parisian Neckwear plays the long game, even as its centenary approaches
76427 2017-07-24 00:00:00Z Small business

Parisian Neckwear plays the long game, even as its…

by Rob O'Neill

Parisian Neckwear, founded in 1919, has survived depression, war, deregulation and a deluge of cheap imports. How? Just feel the cloth.

Read more
David Tamihere case: Key witnesses' doubts about murder of Swedish tourists
76738 2017-07-23 00:00:00Z Crime

David Tamihere case: Key witnesses' doubts about m…

by Donna Chisholm

Nearly 30 years after young Swedish tourists Urban Hoglin and Heidi Paakkonen disappeared in the Coromandel key witnesses say the mystery haunts them.

Read more
Modern slavery and tourism: when holidays and human exploitation collide
76728 2017-07-23 00:00:00Z Social issues

Modern slavery and tourism: when holidays and huma…

by The Conversation

With the advent of orphanage tourism, travellers think they're doing good. But they can often just be lining the pockets of the orphanages' owners.

Read more